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'It's been real hard, but I'm living!' | Optimistic teen waiting for a forever family

With her smile so big and attitude so proud, 16-year-old Anissa is so easy to love.

ARKANSAS, USA — For teenage girls, a large part of "feeling pretty" means being comfortable in her own skin. One 16-year-old is working to do just that, all on her own.

Anissa is up for adoption. Like other teenage girls who are waiting for a family, they're faced with the reality that they may age out without being adopted.

Regardless, this girl has a smile like no other and strives to find comfort exactly where she is.

"I'm 16 and I'm in the 11th grade, about to be a senior next year!" Anissa said.

Anissa is easy to love. In her free time, she loves going to the movies. And as far as her passions go, she said she loves taking care of people.

From the moment we met her, we noticed a smile so big and an attitude so proud.

"As soon as I get out of school, I'm gonna go to college," she said. "I wanna either do something medical or in the criminal investigations."

Anissa got to spend the day being pampered at the Dillard's Clinique counter by Ashley Jacks -- a makeup artist who wanted Anissa to not only look, but more importantly, feel amazing. 

"It makes me feel weird, but it's okay!" Anissa said, referring to all the attention she was getting on this day.

Anissa admitted she's a little shy, especially when it comes to one topic.

"Yeah, I wanna be adopted. It's just, I don't know. It's hard," she said.

Anissa said it's especially difficult because shes's a teenager.

"People don't really want teenagers. They want babies and stuff," she explained. 

It's a harsh reality Anissa has had to face head-on.

"If I get adopted, it'll be exciting. But if I don't, I'm still not gonna be sad," she said. 

For now, a gift for Anissa to take with her and a full reveal -- very subtle makeup on a beautiful girl with a stunning smile and spirit, getting by on faith.

"I am a Christian and love god, so He helps me. I have a mentor too, and she's helpful," she said.

Anissa's just a teen hoping for the best and doing everything she can to survive the system.  

"It's been real hard, but I'm living," she said with a smile on her face.

Anissa has been in foster care for four years. 

Thank you to Ashley and all the ladies at Clinique who made Anissa feel like a princess for a moment.

There are no costs associated with adopting a child in state foster care. For adoption inquiries, please visit fosterarkansas.org.

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